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Henry Robinson Luce

Luce, Henry Robinson, 1898–1967, American publisher, b. Tengchow (now Penglai), China, the son of a Presbyterian missionary. After studying at Yale and Oxford, he worked (1921–22) as a reporter on the Chicago Daily News and the Baltimore News. In 1923, with Briton Hadden, he founded Time, a weekly news magazine that featured capsulated news accounts written in a brisk, adjective-laden style. After Hadden's death (1929), Luce became editor in chief (1929–64) of Time Inc. (now part of Time Warner) and subsequently founded Fortune (1930), a business monthly; Life (1936), a pictorial news magazine; and Sports Illustrated (1954). Through control of these magazines and a book division, Luce was generally considered the most influential magazine publisher in the United States since S. S. McClure, and also one of the most controversial. His critics maintained that Time reflected his personal leanings—Republicanism, anticommunism, and internationalism. He believed that objective reporting was impossible and encouraged his editors to express his own views in their articles, which were unsigned. Luce and his second wife, Clare Boothe Luce, were influential in national politics.

See R. T. Elson, Time, Inc. (1968); biographies by J. Kobler (1968), W. A. Swanberg (1972), and A. Brinkley (2010).

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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